There are many heroic legends surrounding Finn MacCool, comparisons have been drawn between him and the legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Finn was reputed to have been the leader of the Fianna, the guardians of the King of Ireland. He formed the Fianna from a rough bunch of warriors into an elite group of men who transformed under his command into the manifestation of justice and honour, they were the people's heroes.

 

Finn's son Oisin, whose mother was the goddess Sadb, is said to be buried in Glenaan. It is worth noting that many of the great legends of Ireland are based or linked to the north coast of Ulster. There must be some correlation between this and the fact that White Park Bay was one of the first settlement areas on these shores. However in this section we will concentrate on his role in building the Giant's Causeway. The story goes thus:-

 

Finn, a renowned warrior was going about his daily duties on the north coast when one of his not so close friends, a Scottish giant called Benandonner started shouting and ridiculing Finn's fighting prowess. This ruffled Finn who after a few hours of insults, lifted a lump of earth and pelted it to Scotland as a challenge to this giant.   The Scottish giant retaliated with a rock back to Finn shouting that if he could get his hand on him, he would make sure that Finn would never fight again adding that unfortunately he could not swim the short distance across the Channel, so Finn would be spared that fate. Finn got enraged by this and tore large pieces from the cliffs, he worked for over a week pushing these giant columns into the ocean bed to make a sturdy causeway to Scotland, when he had finished he shouted across to Benandonner, 'Now you'll have no excuse you big gab, come on over and do your best'. Fearing to lose his own reputation and pride the Scottish giant had no alternative but come over the causeway.

 

Finn was super tired, having not slept for the week he worked on the causeway and did not feel ready for fighting. He thought about how he could buy some time and recuperate to face the Scottish giant but his wife Una already had the plan in hand, she would dress him up as a baby. Quickly they made what looked convincingly like a large cot and disguised Finn as a baby ...... and they waited. The Scottish giant arrived and banged on Finn's door shouting, 'Where is that coward MacCool'? Finn's wife answered the door and politely said that Finn was away but invited him in for a cup of tea, reassuring Benandonner that Finn would not be long. The tea arrived with a cake in which Finn's wife had placed some stones.

 

Benandonner took a bite and found it tough, he thought to himself, that Finn must be a tough boy to eat cake like this but not to be outdone, he finished off the cake and tea, chipping two teeth in the process. He then noticed the baby cot and the baby inside it and his eyes widened in fear, he thought to himself, my goodness if this is the size of the baby. What size is the Father? He reached his hand in to touch the sleeping baby, half out of curiosity and half as a sign of affection, Finn bit his hand with the bite of a horse. Benandonner was shocked by this and thought to himself, if this is what the baby is capable of, what must the father be capable of and what could he not do to me? This thought terrified him and his fear got the better of him. He took to his heels and ran like he had never run before, back across the causeway to Scotland, as he went he pulled out the giant columns to stop Finn following him.  Well.....that is one version of the story, there are many more to choose from, including one of love and romance.